ITV newsreader Rageh Omaar flooded with well wishes after becoming ill live on air

ITV newsreader Rageh Omaar flooded with well wishes after becoming ill live on air

Related video: Moment ITV News at Ten is evacuated during live broadcast due to fire alarm

ITV News

Rageh Omaar, ITV News’ international affairs editor and newsreader, has received an outpouring of support online after he struggled with his words during Friday’s News at Ten bulletin.

Viewers became concerned for the 56-year-old’s wellbeing as his speech slowed during an introduction to a report on city nightlife, and at the end of the programme, Omaar appeared to have difficulty issuing a sign-off to those watching.

ITV pulled a repeat of the programme on its +1 channel, instead displaying a message which said it was “temporarily unable to bring you our +1 service” and that broadcasting would “resume shortly”.

In a statement, a spokesperson for the presenter said: “We are aware that viewers are concerned about Rageh Omaar’s wellbeing. Rageh became unwell while presenting News at Ten on Friday and is now receiving medical care.

“He thanks everyone for their well wishes.”

Social media users have since wished Omaar a “speedy recovery” following the incident.

Others have called for individuals to display “basic decency and respect” by not sharing the footage further:

The nature of Omaar’s illness during the live broadcast has not been disclosed.

Omaar joined ITV News as a special correspondent and presenter back in 2013, becoming a deputy newsreader for News at Ten in 2015.

Before that, he worked at Al Jazeera and BBC News, making his name with his reporting from Iraq as senior foreign correspondent for the public service broadcaster.

On Saturday afternoon, an ITV spokesperson said Omaar is now "recovering at home with his family".

In a statement shared by ITV News, Omaar said: "I would like to thank everyone for their kindness and good wishes, especially all the medical staff, all my wonderful colleagues at ITV News, and our viewers who expressed concern.

"At the time, I was determined to finish presenting the programme. I am grateful for all the support I’ve been given.”

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